- You should accept a job offer if it helps grow your career and aligns with your career goals and salary expectations.
- There’s a difference between formal and informal job offers. Accepting a formal offer is how you’ll start a new job.
- Keep your job acceptance emails and phone calls professional and use them to clarify any final questions you have about the job.
So, after a long job search and interview process, you’ve received a job offer. Time to celebrate—almost! First, you have to accept the job offer to make your new opportunity official. Before you start writing an email or practicing a phone call to the hiring manager, let’s run through a few details of accepting a job offer.
Should You Accept a Job Offer?
You should have plenty of conversations about the job and company with the hiring manager or team leader before it comes time to accept a job offer. That way, you can discern if this opportunity is a good fit for you and your career goals before an offer comes your way. Once you’re offered the job, you can expect to receive a formal job offer via email or phone from the recruiter or HR manager who led your interviews. Then you can start the process of accepting the job.
Informal vs. Formal Job Offers
You may have heard the terms formal offer and informal offer when it comes to landing a new job. What’s the difference between an informal job offer and a formal job offer? I’m glad you asked. An informal job offer isn’t a legally binding employment agreement. A hiring manager or business contact might say, “I have an open role I think you’d be great at,” or, “Sure, buddy, the job is yours!” But these are informal offers made in conversation, and they’re not a green light that you’ve been officially offered the position.
A formal job offer is a written contract that lays out all the details of your new job. It’ll typically be given to you with the company letterhead and space where you sign your name to legally bind the agreement.
How to Negotiate a Job Offer
Before writing and sending your acceptance email, look over your formal offer with a fine-toothed comb. The HR person or leader who’s hiring you will typically send a formal job offer through email. Once you get hired, you’ll want to look over all the details included in this formal HR document to confirm that information like the job title, start date, work hours, salary and employment benefits (like PTO, health insurance and retirement eligibility) are correct. If any information in the job offer is incorrect, be sure to discuss it with your hiring manager before accepting the offer.
How to Accept a Job Offer: 5 Steps
Hey, way to go! You’ve received a formal offer, and you’re moving forward with a new job. Before you accept the job, here are the five steps to get all the important final details in order and then communicate with the hiring manager clearly and confidently. It’s almost time to seal the deal!
1. Share your enthusiasm and gratitude for the opportunity.
Starting off, thank the person offering you the job for the time it took to interview you and provide additional information about the role. Explain that you’re excited for this new opportunity and look forward to the possibility of being part of the team.
2. Find out when you need to give an answer.
Find out when you need to give a firm answer about accepting the job. It’s best to reply with your final decision within 24–48 hours of receiving a formal job offer.
3. Make a list of final questions about the role.
If you have any further questions about the role and responsibilities of the new job, be sure to write them down before you officially accept the job offer. You want to make sure you’ve got all the details about your new responsibilities, work culture and other aspects of the job before committing to the position. Here are some questions you might want to ask:
- What is the start date?
- When are employees eligible for health insurance or retirement benefits?
- What will my first day look like?
- What are the immediate responsibilities of the role?
- How many people are on the team?
- Who will I report to?
- How often will performance reviews happen?
4. Research the salary.
Before confirming you’ll take the new job, do some research to make sure the salary offer is competitive in the market and fair for your education and experience. If it is, you’re good to go! But if there’s room to negotiate, now’s the time to confirm the starting pay.
5. Write and send your job offer acceptance email.
Once you’re sure the salary checks out, all your questions about the job and workplace are answered, and you’ve expressed appreciation for the opportunity, it’s time to write your job acceptance email. Let’s look at a few examples of how to do that.
Job Offer Acceptance Email Examples
Once you’ve looked over your job offer and confirmed all the information is updated and correct, it’s time to write your acceptance email. This is the response to the formal contract sent by your new employer. These are the main points you want to cover in your email, and I’ll show you some examples so you can see how these look in a professional email.
- Add the subject line with your name and “job offer acceptance.”
- Include the date and salutation.
- Express thanks for the opportunity.
- Confirm the role, start date and salary.
- Ask any questions about the role if you need to.
- Accept the offer.
- Offer to share any extra paperwork or other personal data for HR.
- Sign off with a positive note.
Here are a few job acceptance email templates you can tweak with your own details. Remember that this is a professional email, so no matter how excited you are, keep it classy.
Job Offer Acceptance Example
Subject line: Your Name—Job Offer Acceptance
Get Everything You Need to Land the Job You Love!
Date: October 17, 2023
Dear [hiring manager],
Thank you for the opportunity to interview for the [job position] at [company name]. It was a pleasure meeting you and the team. I look forward to starting as the new [role] on [start date].
I want to confirm the annual salary for this position is [annual amount] per year, plus employment benefits. This is in line with my salary expectations as we discussed during our earlier phone interviews.
If you need any additional information from me before my start date, please contact me at [phone number] or [email]. Thank you again for the opportunity to share my skills and help support the mission at [company].
Job Offer Negotiation Example
Subject Line: Your Name—Job Offer Acceptance
Date: October 17, 2023
Dear [hiring manager],
Thank you for the employment offer at [company]! I’m looking forward to starting on [start date] as the [job title] and helping serve the team’s mission.
After reviewing the job offer, I have a question about the sick time benefit for employees. As we discussed during an earlier interview, I have a surgery scheduled after my start date. The procedure and recovery time will require more days off than what’s currently offered for sick time. I want to confirm that taking additional time off for health purposes is possible and won’t affect my annual salary of [amount].The rest of the contract details match what we discussed on the phone, and I’m excited for this opportunity! Please contact me at [phone number] or [email] to review the sick time and paid time off benefits before my proposed start date.
Get Clear on Your Career
By now, you should have a good idea of whether or not the job opportunity you’re looking at is the right step for your career. For more information about how to move forward, check out my Get Clear Career Assessment. It’ll help you understand the best career opportunities for you so you can accept the next amazing job offer that comes your way.
When should you accept a job offer?
You should accept a job offer when you’re excited about the opportunity, recognize it as a step to grow in your career, and feel that the salary and benefits match your expectations.
What should I look for in a job offer?
Before accepting a job, make sure the salary is fair for your experience, the role aligns with your goals, and you agree to the schedule and responsibilities of the job. These details should be included in your job offer.
How will I receive my job offer?
You’ll usually receive a job offer via email or over the phone after you complete your interviews.
How much time do I have to accept a job offer?
It’s courteous and professional to accept a job offer within 24–48 hours of getting your formal offer. If you need to confirm additional details with the hiring team about the job, you can wait to accept until you receive that information.